Low Levels of Fruit Nitrogen as Drivers for the Evolution of Madagascar's

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2017
Autores
Donati, Giuseppe
Santini, Luca
Eppley, Timothy M.
Arrigo-Nelson, Summer J.
Balestri, Michela
Boinski, Sue
Bollen, An
Bridgeman, LeAndra L.
Campera, Marco
Carrai, Valentina
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The uneven representation of frugivorous mammals and birds across tropical regions-high in the New World, low in Madagascar and intermediate in Africa and Asia-represents a long-standing enigma in ecology. Several hypotheses have been proposed to explain these differences but the ultimate drivers remain unclear. Here, we tested the hypothesis that fruits in Madagascar contain insufficient nitrogen to meet primate metabolic requirements, thus constraining the evolution of frugivory. We performed a global analysis of nitrogen in fruits consumed by primates, as collated from 79 studies. Our results showed that average frugivory among lemur communities was lower compared to New World and Asian-African primate communities. Fruits in Madagascar contain lower average nitrogen than those in the New World and Old World. Nitrogen content in the overall diets of primate species did not differ
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Scientific Reports. London, v. 7, p. -, 2017.
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